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Research article2004Peer reviewed

Influence of CRH and ACTH administration on endocrine profile and ovulation in sows

Lang A, Kaeoket K, Kindahl H, Madej A, Einarsson S


Grouping of sows is a stressful event until the ranking is established. The purpose of this study was to simulate stress by repeated administration of porcine corticotropin releasing hormone (CRH) and adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH)/tetracosactide and to study its influence on endocrine profile and ovulation. Four multiparous sows were used and blood was collected every 2 h from the onset of pro-oestrus until 12 h after ovulation. The first oestrus after weaning was used to check ovulation and acclimatize the sows to their environment. The second oestrus after weaning was used as control. At their third oestrus CRH (0.6 mug/kg) and at their fourth oestrus ACTH (5 mug/kg) were given every 4 h from onset of oestrus until ovulation. The total 'area under the curve' of cortisol was twofold larger in two of four sows during the CRH treatment period, and two- to fourfold larger (p less than or equal to 0.05) during the ACTH treatment period, compared with the corresponding control period. In three sows, there was no clear effect of either CRH or ACTH on the levels of oestradiol 17beta, luteinizing hormone (LH) or on the timing of ovulation. One sow was different in all hormonal patterns and also in the timing of ovulation. In all four sows, ACTH treatment lowered the baseline level of prostaglandin F-2alpha-metabolite. Therefore, we conclude that stage of the oestrous cycle seems to be of importance when investigating the influence of exogenous administration of CRH/ACTH on hormonal pattern and ovulation time in the sow

Published in

Reproduction in Domestic Animals
2004, Volume: 39, number: 3, pages: 181-189